Heaven Down To Earth - Words of Spiritual Guidance
by Rev. Paul Werner
Chapter 9 - Action
Activity is worth more than prayer. Prayer is a condition; action fulfills it.
Once you meet God you will be driven by His spirit to do His will. His will is in constant motion -- moving toward the fulfillment of the purpose of creation, bringing love to all things, and healing the soul of this wounded world.
How do you react when you see people suffer? Do you simply feel it is a shame but that as one individual, you have no power to do anything to help them? When God touches your heart, you cannot relax and conclude that you have no power to do something about it. If you witness another's misery, you will naturally want to sacrifice and offer your whole life to bring other people the key to salvation. But before you make this step, you must first unite with God. We all need to be motivated to accomplish something. Seeing the suffering of humanity through God's eyes sharpens our perception and can fill us with the sense of urgency that we have to do something. When we fail to act, we will feel only half-alive.
If you make a decision and determine to reach certain goals and aspirations, things will definitely begin to move. If you have beautiful dreams but do not come forth with the dedication and willpower to accomplish them, nothing will materialize.
Action produces greater energy. Do not sit back -- act. No matter what it is, do something. Advance toward your goals and dreams; hard work can get you anywhere. Words such as create, manufacture, invent, fashion, develop, or compose may stir something from deep within you and stimulate you to act.
All of us have the innate desire to be happy; even if it is hidden, we also yearn to lead a productive life. But if we are inactive, our search for contentment is futile. In order for thunder and lightning to occur, something has to move.
If you talk about love based exclusively on your beautiful experiences in prayer and even in life, you may suddenly encounter a person who has many problems and many needs. That person may reach out to you and demand your love. Yet if you have no firsthand experience loving someone, you may not feel any compulsion to embrace that person or shed tears for him. Talking is one thing; action is another. It is best when they harmonize. If you want to be a saint, you have to act like one.
We are confronted with many teachers every day. Schools and universities do not have a monopoly on educators. We meet many "experts" outside the classroom. They possess experience and wisdom in a wide variety of fields. Other people can teach us about work, relaxation, love, suffering, tolerance, creativity, and so on. But it is up to us whether or not we will benefit from their knowledge. We will always learn something by listening to people who have the ability or position to share their insight. Later, we can confirm its truth through prayer and meditation. Once we receive new enlightenment, the next step is also ours: action!
When we come to understand the will of God for this world and for our lives, we will be faced with a tremendous decision. Each of us has pangs of conscience. If we perceive God is urging us to do certain things but we ignore His voice, we will eventually become spiritually weak. However, if we discern that God is speaking and we follow His instructions, we will gain spiritual strength. Our self-confidence increases as our willpower intensifies.
There are many people who do little or nothing all day. The inner tension this creates may not be visible, but it consumes them with guilt and fear. They may even become afraid to live. Every individual needs to work at something. If a person is no longer active, he may spiritually suffocate step by step.
The world is not yet restored; God has proclaimed this as a time of emergency. The war in which we are now engaged will not last forever, but during this period, action is most important. Some may forego their duty to act at this time and instead decide to live their lives according to personal desire. Although they may pray for those on the frontline, perhaps they have never realized that commitment and motivation go hand in hand.
Prayer should not be used as an excuse for inactivity at this time. If we have made the offering of our entire life to fulfill God's will, how can we withdraw it at the time when God needs us most? People have prayed for thousands of years. Their prayers were of great importance to God because at the time they lived, not as much could be accomplished as today. We are the fruit of the tears and longing of the Messiah. We have the unique privilege of being alive at the time he lives on the earth. Someone once commented that it is much easier to serve a risen Lord than the living Christ. But this is the age of attendance, and that entails action.
Prayer is worth nothing if you do not couple it with action. Many people pray a great deal. They probably feel good when they fall asleep at night and think that because of their prayer, God will automatically take care of everything. That is simply not true. If those people would stop for a moment and listen to what God is trying to tell them, the words that would reach their ears might shock them. He would tell them something He hopes we all understand, "There is so much to do. Please don't just sit. Get moving!"
If you would hear Him say such words, you may even be motivated to get up during a prayer condition and find people to teach. God will tell you to go out and show His children the path that has been hidden from their view by an overgrowth of spiritual trees and bushes. Wield your spiritual scythe to cut away the brush and motivate the person to start his journey. Clearing that road is hard work, but it is a dramatic and gratifying scene to see another person on the walkway home to our mutual Father. It takes determination and action. But never feel that you are acting on your own; it is God who acts through us -- when and if we let Him.
Do you want to be an achiever, or are you subconsciously afraid to be a true success? When you talk about reaching a goal, the word "action" may be unstated but is understood. A goal is something you want to attain. In order to work toward the fulfillment of your aim, you have to act. Yet no matter how much your dream excites you, if you are reluctant to act, you will never reach your goal.
Your mind and body are connected. If you believe that you are a loser, you will act out that fantasy. But if you are convinced that you are a champion, that is exactly what you will be motivated to become.
Action is the main word of a Unificationist. We have been commissioned to restore the world. As well, we must re-create ourselves. Our long-term goal is not simply to sit with God in heaven and sing His praise. Rather, we have to envision thousands and millions of people surrounding our God. Yet we cannot fool ourselves and think it will happen automatically.
We must realize that to bring back this entire world to Him will take hard work. To fulfill this goal will take a great deal of exertion and effort, and that is the task now upon our shoulders.
The term "action" indicates constant mobility. It is important for each of us to grow continually. Steady spiritual evolution is just as essential as fulfilling our physiological needs. There are many things to be said in defense of self-education. It is important to expect a great deal of yourself. God does. He created you to fulfill certain ventures. He always envisions you reaching your full potential. The problem is that you do not always anticipate success. You predict your own defeat and then consider yourself a failure rather than looking at the stumbling block for what it is. Positivism is healing; it generates and regenerates action. But negativity does the opposite.
Whatever the spirit of God instructs you to do, carry out His direction. If your conscience tells you to do something, follow it. Your conscience represents the original mind centered upon God. Going against your conscience will cause you to feel depressed as it is a self-defeating action. Pray for more wisdom; pray for a more sacrificial heart and greater love. Pray to receive fresh inspiration, not for your own benefit, but in order to better serve God.
Cause good things to happen. But don't focus on those things purely for personal profit. Instead, focus on acting for humanity.
Continually expand your awareness. Broadening your consciousness is a progressive thing; you must simply start and it will naturally become wider and wider. You can never acquire wisdom or knowledge if you shy away from confrontation or activity. Up to now you may have relished a position on the sidelines and been relieved to sit there. You have thought and thought about changes you would make in the world, in this movement, in your family, in yourself But only contemplating the thoughts in your mind is limiting and will not get you very far.
This world will be restored only once. You have the golden opportunity to participate; you alone must make the decision to reach out and try to grasp the gold ring, or continue to remain in the background. Your decision will determine whether you will live in eternal joy or eternal regret. This is the time to get busy and keep working.
The frontline is the place where every individual can become a strong character. But if I were you, I would not worry so much about developing a powerful personality. I would be active!
People have been praying for centuries. Prayer is good, but action ultimately has more value. Prayer can create a foundation to accompany any proclamation you make to God and spirit world. Yet if after telling others that you are going to do something you wait and neglect doing it, they will regard you as untrustworthy and not consider you to be a person of your word. Once you profess that you are going to accomplish a certain goal, make sure you achieve it. When your declaration and action come together, others will respect and trust you.
What is it that God and spirit world expect of us? Simply put, they want us to prove our words of commitment through action. Spirit world cannot work through us if we only use beautiful words but do not act upon them.
If we each put into motion the teachings we receive, we would naturally heighten our understanding of God. We would be spurred on to do greater things for God and humanity. In order for something we receive to become public property, we must donate it in some way. For example, we should act upon any words that broaden our ideals. What is given to us is for the public purpose. By acting, we become public people.
This is the time for action. In order to be able to act we need power from God. That comes through prayer life. Pray more; don't become dry and sober. God is ready to touch this world through the outreach of our hands. That takes action which is exactly what He yearns to perform through us.
Although in one sense the love of a child is passive, it is beautiful to behold. On the other hand, the love of a mature person is active and substantial; it becomes a creative love. Action accompanies the love of a mature person because such love is manifested through deeds. If we possess the highest standard of love, we have the capacity to turn our love into accomplishments. If the love we volunteer is unconditional, we will become the most effective people for God.
As yet, our love has not ripened or developed completely. But our capacity grows as our love blossoms. As a person matures spiritually, his love grows. If we become the incarnation of love, everything we do becomes a good deed.
We are not here just to smile at one another. Rather, we have been called to serve each other and ultimately the whole world. We may have a great amount of love in our hearts but if we are incapable of loving, we do not put that love into action. Love, wisdom, and deeds go hand in hand. The ability to manifest love as well as act, goes along with maturity. The most loving person is actually the greatest servant.
Whatever you invest during your physical life is recorded in the Book of Life in heaven. Even if you have been relatively inactive before, start anew! Act as if you were reborn and simply commence. Do not dwell upon all that you have invested thus far and proclaim that because you are growing older and feel tired, it is time to sit back. Remember that God has never stopped working to bring mankind back home. Because He knows the strength and power of Satan, He cannot afford to rest until the task is done. He needs help and asks if He can work through our hearts, our minds, and our brawn.
So much more must still be accomplished. If we can really recognize the urgency that fills God's heart, we will not allow ourselves to quit or slow down. We are fighting a war against Satan and the evil of this world; this is the time to engage in combat.
Your words and actions must be synchronized. Put your action where your mouth is. Very few people throughout history did that.
Each time we recite the Pledge we say, "I will fight with my life." Do we realize what we are actually proclaiming? It is a strong statement; at the moment we utter it, we may be filled with spirit and conviction. Yet during the week we may hear our alarm clock and not feel like getting up. We may just stay in bed, rationalizing ourselves into extra sleep. However, by saying the Pledge each week, we continuously rededicate our lives to God. Such a contradiction may cause many unnecessary feelings of inadequacy and compromise; inactivity is not the way to Heaven.
We have to mobilize spirit world but cannot merely give commands. We have to act. When we do, spirits will work with us. We have to produce something, consciously incorporating the spirit world into our endeavors -and mission. That is when things will happen.
The fastest way to God is to shoot straight up. The "vehicle" to use is action. Strive to fulfill your mission with total investment. Become totally active, totally involved, and totally sacrificial. And perform the deeds of your mission and gestures of love out of unqualified obedience to God. You will actually save time if you do not look for ways out or shortcuts: there are none.
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